Press Releases

Electronic Filing Option Provides Fastest State Tax Refunds

Free tax assistance and filing provided by Department of Revenue

January 28, 2002

Department’s emphasis on electronic filing last year helped increase the number of taxpayers that filed electronically to grow by more than 100,000 to a total of 472,641. “That’s an increase of 26 percent over the previous year,” Bridges points out.

Bridges says the state is offering several convenient options for filing returns electronically. One is Internet filing from Revenue''s web page. "Anyone with a personal computer and Internet access can go to our web page at http://revenue.louisiana.gov and file their state return," Bridges points out. She adds that although federal returns cannot be filed through this option, the Department maintains links from its web page to approved commercial software providers. However, she points out that some commercial providers charge a fee for use of their software or for electronic filing of the state and federal returns.

The Department of Revenue is again participating in the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program in all regions of the state. Under the VITA program, filers of the federal form 1040EZ and federal form 1040A can make an appointment to receive free tax filing assistance from Department employees who will help them complete their federal and state tax return forms. The Department will then file the returns electronically, free of charge. "This year, we are offering this free assistance at many different sites within each region of the state all through the tax filing season,” Bridges says. “The VITA program greatly assists our older taxpayers and those with lower incomes who cannot afford to pay for tax assistance or to have their returns filed electronically.”

The state also offers some taxpayers the option of filing their returns by touchtone telephone. Bridges points out that TeleFile taxpayers are pre-qualified by the Department and are mailed special TeleFile booklets that contain a Personal Identification Number (PIN) for security purposes. “Anyone who receives a TeleFile booklet in the mail is thought to be pre-qualified based on last year''s return," Bridges says. Last year, more than 40,000 taxpayers filed their returns by telephone, taking an average of 9 minutes to do so. Bridges says anyone who wishes to TeleFile, but did not receive a TeleFile booklet, may go to the Department''s web page or contact any Regional Office for a list of TeleFile requirements. Those who qualify should call the Department at 1-888-829-3071 in order to request a TeleFile booklet and a PIN.

For more information on Internet filing, electronic filing, the VITA program, or TeleFile, visit the Department''s web page at http://revenue.louisiana.gov, or contact any of the following offices of the Department: Baton Rouge Main Office, 617 N. Third Street, 225-219-7318; Baton Rouge Region, 8549 United Plaza (United Plaza 12 Building), 225-922-2300; Alexandria Region, 900 Murray Street, Room B-100, 318-487-5333; Lafayette Region, 825 Kaliste Saloom Road, Brandywine III, Suite 150, 337-262-5455; Lake Charles Region, One Lakeshore Drive, Suite 1550, 337-491-2504; Monroe Region, 122 St. John Street, Room 105, 318-362-3151; New Orleans Region, 1555 Poydras Street, Suite 900, 504-568-7778; Shreveport Region, 1525 Fairfield Avenue, 318-676-7505; and Thibodaux Region, 1418 Tiger Drive, 985-447-0976.